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A company was experiencing short service life on bearings used in the casting of gas turbine blades. NSK conducted an Application Review of the existing design which included an inspection of the failed bearings. An extremely caustic solution  combined with high loads and misalignment was causing lubrication and seizure problems. An alternative wheel design was proposed using a cylindrical roller bearing, with improvements in sealing and lubrication. This resulted in significantly improved performance and doubled lifetime.

Key Facts

  • Gas Turbine casting
  • Bearing replacement every 6 weeks
  • Caustic solution: 50% Sodium hydroxide at 180°C/356°F
  • NSK solution: Application design change of wheel used on carousel, with bearing design cange to NSK sealed cylindrical roller bearing
  • Reduced downtime and maintenance
  • Doubled bearing life
  • Significant reduction in bearing replacement and maintenance costs
  • Gas turbine blade casting
  • Sealed cylindrical roller bearing

Value Proposals

  • The customer was experiencing poor performance on bearings within a carousel application. A Failed Bearing Analysis performed by NSK Engineers showed that this was caused by ingress of extremly agressive caustic solution, combined with high loads and misalignment
  • An Application Review highlighted inadequate sealing as the cause and NSK Engineers designed an alternative wheel design, incorporating improved sealing, easier assembly and an NSK sealed cylindrical roller bearing
  • A trial was conducted using the new design and the results were reviewed. The redesign was succesful with the remaining lines modified

Product Features

  • High load rating
  • Highly corrosion resistant phosphate coating
  • Contact seals prevent ingress of foreign particles or water
  • Increased radial and axial capability
  • Bearings pre-greased with Lithium grease
  • Re-lubrication holes for easy maintenance & grease replenishment
  • Snap ring can be applied to the outer ring

Cost Saving Breakdown

Before Cost p.a. NSK Solution Cost p.a.
Cost of 1 set of assemblies
= $4,781
$143,439 Cost of 1 set of assemblies
= $7,596
Cost of 1 bearing / seal kit
= $1,593
Cost of labour to renew 1 set of assemblies =  $318 $9,547 Cost of labour to renew 1 set of assemblies = $318 $3,816
Bearing life 6 weeks Bearing life 12 - 14 weeks
Total costs per year à 10 changes (x 3 rotators) = $152,989 Total cost per year for 1 change (x 3 rotators) = $45,729
Total Costs $152,989 $45,729



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